SALT (Sexual Abuse Listening Therapy) South West
SALT South West we supports adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse and offers a small number of sessions to 'significant others' (partners, close friends, and supporters).
We are a Plymouth-based charity committed to supporting the lived experience of healing from trauma for the people of Plymouth and the surrounding areas.
SALT is a Christian-based charity, and we offer confidential, non-judgmental, skilled listening therapy to adults regardless of faith, spirituality, or religion.
We have two 'Objects' (purposes) registered with the Charity Commission UK, which are:
To relieve the mental, emotional and spiritual health distresses of adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse, living in Plymouth and the surrounding areas, by the provision of a therapeutic listening service.
To advance education for the public benefit, of people in Plymouth and the surrounding areas,in particular, but not exclusively, by providing training and skills development in the consequences and healing of childhood trauma.
We offer therapeutic listening sessions to both male and female survivors, starting with an initial assessment session. This enables you to come along in a relaxed atmosphere and have a coffee or tea with a member of staff to chat over what you feel you need support with. This generally takes around an hour and gives both you and us the chance to see if SALT is what you need. If things are going to proceed, this will usually mean agreeing to an initial seven individual sessions of work. There is always the opportunity to call for a chat when the Helpline is manned, and occasionally one-off 'holding' sessions until listeners are available, if necessary.
Many survivors of sexual abuse struggle to integrate their mental, emotional, and physical experiences into everyday life as adults and, as a result, can have struggles in many areas. These areas include relationships on every level; self-esteem; mental health; parenting; family situations; self-harming behaviours; self-perception; and social, educational, and workplace struggles, to name a few.
Often, the temptation that may have been reinforced by others (knowingly or unknowingly) is to believe that you are mad, bad, stupid, attention-seeking, or all of these! Self-punishment and being victimised can become habits that also just reinforce the shattered image of 'self'. Large doses of fear, anger, confusion, and guilt or shame feelings can cause people to feel out of control, especially when those things have been 'buried' for a long time.
Many survivors can also believe that they will always be, feel, think/act the way they do now. At SALT, we believe there is hope for every person to receive healing. With the right support and a commitment on your part to stay with the process, you will be amazed at what you can achieve! We all have coping mechanisms that we use as we grow up—some healthy and some not so healthy. Many of the behaviours may be just that—coping mechanisms. The behaviours aren't the problem; they are just a symptom, and there may be many of them.
The feeling of 'being out of control' does, of course, link directly back to when the abuse was happening and you really were out of control, literally, emotionally, mentally, and physically. Consequently, even though you may now be 'grown up', if the 'out of control' stuff has never been looked at and processed, you will probably still feel or be out of control to some degree, and may at times still feel like that child. That is the important thing to remember when thinking about how to live with yourself. Though I am an adult now, the abuse was experienced by a child, not an adult.
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- 17 to 25 years old
- 26 to 64 years old
- Mental health
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